the house is an organ

there is another kind of house, and while this kind may have provided a stage for death, violence and insanity from humans, those acts were symptoms, not the cause. some houses just reject humanity.

the house is neither a machine or a work of art. the house is a living organism, not just an arrangement of dead materials: it lives as a whole and in the details. the house is the skin of the human body.

your home is an extension of yourself, as much as you will let it be, and the place and the people and the things that form and fill it are as much a part of you as your blood. as your bile. as your tears.

the house does not just come up out of the ground, it has roots, but not that kind, roots to its surroundings and its past as another form. as with our skin and our dna it came from a past that will always be embedded into it.


ASH - tracy k. smith

strange house we must keep and fill.
house that eats and pleads and kills.
house on legs. house on fire. house infested
with desire. haunted house. lonely house.
house of trick and suck and shrug.
give-it-to-me house. i-need-you-baby house.
house whose rooms are pooled with blood.
house with hands. house of guilt. house
that other houses built. house of lies
and pride and bone. house afraid to be alone.
house like an engine that churns and stalls.
house with skin and hair for walls.
house the seasons singe and douse.
house that believes it is not a house.



do you know what it's like to live someplace that loves you back?


have you not been paying attention? did it not occur to you that as an organism existing within a greater organism, your intrusion would be felt? and still you harass. and now, like the wayward spider who witlessly settled on a sleeper’s tongue, you will be swallowed. because the truth is this: when a house is both hungry and awake, every room becomes a mouth.
this haunting is architectural. it is not about you. it is about where you are. there are bones in the foundation. this house is a graveyard. this house is a corpse. you are inside the corpse. you are the maggot.

the house has been a burial site. the house is swallowing bodies before the blood has dried.
despite all their efforts to the contrary—their impossible architecture, their threats of betrayal, their lesions in the walls—we keep coming back. we keep exploring them and charting them and trying to bend their distinctively un-human design to our will.
these houses are haunted—they’re haunted by us.

instead of, or perhaps in addition to, the supernatural, old buildings are haunted by their memories: memories of those who once inhabited them, and the memories we bring to them. we’re conditioned, after all, to conflate memory and physical space.

there’s only so much that hate can build up in a place before it starts hating you back… i don’t know what’s in the attic, or if there’s anything up there at all, and i don’t think i want to.

ONE need not be a chamber to be haunted,
one need not be a house;
the brain has corridors surpassing
material place.



far safer, of a midnight meeting
external ghost,
than an interior confronting
that whiter host.


houses are really bodies. we connect ourselves with walls, roofs, and objects just as we hang on to our livers, skeletons, flesh and bloodstream.